Nanor Balabanian and Allyson Miller, the nominees from the Teacher Education Program at UC Santa Barbara’s Gevirtz School for the 2012 Woodrow Wilson-Rockefeller Brothers Fund Fellowship for Aspiring Teachers of Color (WW-RBF), have been named finalists for the award. Balabanian is majoring in political science and double-minoring in education and professional writing and is very passionate about studying the role of technology and mass communication in bringing development and change in society. Miller is a black studies major with a minor in education and she aspires to be an English teacher. UC Santa Barbara’s Gevirtz School is one of only 29 campuses across the country chosen to nominate students; in 2011, the first year of the awards, both Gevirtz School nominees were ultimately chosen for the honor.
The goal of the WW-RBF Fellowships for Aspiring Teachers of Color is to help recruit, support, and retain individuals of color as K-12 public school teachers in the United States. Current trends indicate that by the year 2020, the percentage of teachers of color will fall to an all-time low of five percent of the total teacher force, while the percentage of students of color in the K-12 system will likely near 50%. This Fellowship offers an important opportunity to ensure that greater numbers of highly qualified teachers of color enter public school classrooms around the country.
Candidates must be nominated by their undergraduate institution in order to be considered for this fellowship program. Each nominating institution is allowed to nominate two candidates for the fellowship. Interested applicants must meet all requirements and campus application deadlines in order to be nominated and move forward in the application process. Acceptance into the Fellowship program is contingent on acceptance into a partner graduate program (such as UCSB). The Woodrow Wilson Foundation expects to award 25 WW-RBF Fellowships in the amount of $30,000 annually.
[Nanor Balabanian and Allyson Miller are available for interviews; contact George Yatchisin at 805 893 5789]
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Photo caption: Nanor Balabanian and Allyson Miller.